Jay Monahan, the commissioner of the PGA Tour, believes that the PGA cannot fight LIV Golf financially at this time. As he says, LIV Golf wants to ‘buy golf’ with this.
“I am not naive,” said Monahan for golfmonthly. “If this is an arms race and if the only weapons here are dollar bills, the PGA Tour can’t compete. The PGA Tour, an American institution, can’t compete with a foreign monarchy that is spending billions of dollars in attempt to buy the game of golf.
“We welcome good, healthy competition. The LIV Saudi golf league is not that. It’s an irrational threat; one not concerned with the return on investment or true growth of the game. Currently no one organisation owns or dominates the game of golf.
LIV Golf plans
The plans that LIV Golf has in the world of golf do not match the plans of the PGA Tour. PGA leaders believe that these moves are destroying the beauty of golf.
“Instead, the various entities, be it Augusta National or the USGA or the LPGA or the PGA TOUR or the PGA of America work together to meet our own respective priorities, but with the best interests of the game overall at heart. But when someone attempts to buy the sport, dismantle the institutions that are intrinsically invested in its growth, and focus only on a personal priority, that partnership evaporates, and instead we end up with one person, one entity, using endless amounts of money to direct employees, not members or partners, toward their personal goal, which may or may not change tomorrow or the next day.
“I doubt that’s the vision any of us have for the game. Now, I know legacy and purpose sound like talking points that don’t mean much, but when I talk of those concepts, it isn’t about some sort of intangible moral high ground. It is our track record as an organisation and as a sport.
What makes PGA special is that the biggest names are in that tournament. They have a history, they only have the most to offer, and that is why they are against competitions like LIV Golf.
“On the PGA Tour, our members compete for the opportunity to add their names to history books, and, yes, significant financial benefits, without having to wrestle with any sort of moral ambiguity. And pure competition creates relevancy and context, which is what fans need and expect in order to invest their time in a sport and in a player. That’s the beauty of the PGA Tour. We have and always will provide a global platform for members to compete against the very best, earn their stardom, and become household names.”